Earlier this month, in the main event of UFC 205, UFC featherweight champion Conor McGregor knocked out lightweight champ Eddie Alvarez to become the first fighter in UFC history to hold titles in two weight classes concurrently.
In the wake of this win, McGregor revealed his plans to take some time off to father his first child with long-time girlfriend Dee Devlin. Though we know it’ll be some time before we see him in action again, debates about his next opponent began to surface almost immediately.
In a world where logic rules and the rankings determine who fights for the title, McGregor’s next opponent would almost certainly be Khabib Nurmagomedov. The Dagestan native extended his record to a flawless 24-0 with a decimation of Michael Johnson on the UFC 205 undercard. That’s a hard record to argue with.
We know, however, that the UFC is willing to brush the most logical matchups aside in favor of fights they deem more lucrative. When McGregor began swapping barbs with UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley, it looked liked we were heading in this direction. As compelling as a McGregor vs. Nurmagomedov bout would be, after all, its hard to imagine anything more buzz-worthy than McGregor’s challenging Woodley for a third title.
Having been disappointed by the UFC’s matchmaking strategy in the past, Nurmagomedov is now bracing to be disappointed again. In a recent interview with RT Sport, the streaking contender explained that he’s got other plans if he doesn’t receive the next crack at McGregor.
See this full interview at the top of this post.
“I have big plan, I have big plan,” he told RT Sport. “After a couple days, you guys will know.”
While it’s easy to speculate that Nurmagomedov might be planning a jump up to welterweight, he seemed to rule this possibility out in the interview. That said, he did admit it was an exciting thought.
“Maybe, but I think I am truly a lightweight, I’m not a welterweight. But why not smash Conor McGregor, take the lightweight belt, and fight for the welterweight title. I like this idea. Maybe.”
What do you think Nurmagomedov has planned if he doesn’t get a title shot? A departure from the UFC? A fight with Tony Ferguson? Sound off, PENN Nation!